Camille Marino, an animal rights extremist who founded the website – Negotiation is Over, was handcuffed to her chair in a Michigan courtroom and then taken to jail after a judge found that she had violated the terms of her bond and would be tried for stalking a researcher in Michigan. The pattern of criminal harassment and threats she directed against Michigan researchers was nearly identical to behavior she directed against me and other UCLA researchers since 2009 and that she has since repeated in her efforts to intimated Florida scientists. As I have previously stated, this pattern of behavior must not be tolerated in a civil society; it is neither Constitutionally protected, nor decent.
Starting in 2009, Ms. Marino began a focused campaign that included blog posts and emails that were intended to intimidate and harass me. These individual activities are too numerous to mention here, but they culminated in a post she made in June of 2010:
The image on this page is not a cute logo. It is my personal belief that if you are a sadistic animal torturer, that is all you deserve – a chalk outline. That’s my opinion, not a threat. It’s not even inciting anyone because, unless you read my words and run out and murder David Jenstch (sic) (an idea that amuses me immensely), I’m not responsible. If you have time to think about it and form your own conclusions, my words cease being the impetus. Eh, that used to be the law at least. Who knows? Who cares? We have a job to do and that’s all that matters…. NIO is no longer mincing words. This is war!… Nothing is off limits at NIO!
If this wasn’t enough, she goes on:
if there are no consequences, there is no threat. If you spill blood, your blood should be spilled as well…. Some of the more high profile pacifists have said that I am “violent” and “unbalanced”. I think they finally may be right about something!
If I have my way, you’ll be praying to us for mercy!
In these two paragraphs, Marino makes perfectly clear her willingness to engage in criminally threatening speech that well exceeds the protections afforded by the First Amendment. It also shows her intent to see her own words spun into actions (by others, of course!) It’s why a court in Southern California granted me a permanent restraining order against her in 2010. I went to court with nothing more than a stack of NIO posts and emails in my hand, the judge saw them for the threats that they were intended to be.
When, sometime later, Marino turned her attention to Michigan researchers, I contacted those individuals and recommended the same strategy. Today, that strategy has played its way out, and Marino is in jail pending trial, as it should be. Her trial will be an opportunity to fully dissect the blogs, comments and emails sent by Marino and other NIO individuals, and I fully believe it will lead to a guilty verdict. What is more, in the process, other NIO individuals who engaged in threatening behavior can be identified, and the legal process can be directed against them.
This is my message to researchers who are being targeted by extremists like those at NIO. When they cross the line, take action. Go to court. Get an order. Demand the court enforce the order and send those activists to jail. For too long, these extremists have depended on us to lay low and to let them malign us. Let this not be the case any longer.
No one bears the responsibility to protect us if we won’t protect ourselves using the tools the law provides. Marino and her sycophants are nothing more than thugs, bullies and stalkers, and the law must be made to recognize that.
If you are being targeted by animal rights extremists, contact me. I’m more than willing to help. Together, we can put a stop to the criminal harassment of animal rights extremists.